- Suggested retail price: $249
- Thursday, April 23 (for as long as it lasts), we're pouring a one-ounce pour for $7
Blackadder is a whisky merchant making some very big waves in the world of whisky. All Blackadder whiskies are single-barrel bottlings, with no chill-filtering and no color added. Their "Raw Cask" bottlings are bottled at cask strength, passing only through a rough sieve. Most whisky is filtered and most of it is cold stabilized. Cold stabilization is a process by which the whisky is brought near to freezing so that certain oils and natural fats (that can make a lower proof spirit go cloudy) fall out. This is done purely for cosmetic reasons. The Blackadder folk don't believe in it. Likewise they don't believe in added color.
Filtering and cold stabilization, also remove many of the natural fats, oils and flavors in the whisky which, in turn, removes a great deal of the individual character of a whisky, as the esters, or flavor congeners, in the spirit tend to gather around these fats. The more a whisky is chilled when filtering, the greater the proportion of fats and esters are removed.
Bright filtering also removes a large part of these fats and esters with losses of around two to three percent of the cask volume when bottling. The loss when bottling our Blackadder Raw Cask is normally less than half a percent. Blackadder believes in bottling only whiskies that are completely natural - thus keeping alive the centuries old traditions by which they are first lovingly distilled and then carefully aged over the years they spend silently maturing in cask. Blackadder was founded by Robin Tucek, co-author of The Malt Whisky File. All Blackadder whiskies are his personal selection.
Blackadder Raw Cask whisky are released at cask-strength, which keeps them from ever becoming cloudy. The bottles even contain flecks of barrel char that are not filtered out. It's as natural and raw a whisky as if you yourself popped the bung out of the barrel and drew it. This is how whisky was sold in days of yore, by the barrel.
This week's bottling is from The Clynelish Distillery. Clynelish has a history dating back into the 1800s, but the stills currently operating on that site date from 1969. This is a modern operation that produces a clean whisky. It's a lovely North Highland malt with a heavy maritime influence. This particular bottle was distilled on 27 May, 1992 (FIVE DAYS after we opened Stage Left). How crazy is that?
This bottle will meet it's fate Thursday evening. We will open one bottle at 6:30 precisely. I hope to see you there.